To Arrowbear and beyond!

Yeah! Time for another outing with Dave and Max!  We had passed by a tiny restaurant in Arrowbear that proclaims it has the “World’s Best Enchiladas”.  Online, folks also had great things to say about the burgers there, too.  As Dave said “we will be the judge of that!” Road trip!

(An aside on the name of the village: Arrowbear is so named…because it is halfway between Lake Arrowhead and Big Bear Lake.  In a land with names with Fawnskin, Skyforest, and Moonridge, I can’t believe the lack of creativity.  I just assume the original name was horrendous, and Arrowbear is the best alternative!)

The Deep Creek Drive-In was pretty good.  Dave said that they were the second best enchiladas he’s ever had, and JJ and I enjoyed our burgers and tacos (one carnitas, one lengua).  The menu boasted homemade flan for dessert, but we were way too full to try it out.

We headed west to Lake Arrowhead, to try out the trail that JJ and I wanted to do earlier in the summer.  The problem we encountered that first time there was the parking area for the trailhead.  The gravel was so absurdly deep that we got stuck just as we arrived, and a van-full of college boys had to push us out.  We decided to come back with Dave’s Rock Lobster, and all its Jeep power!

The Metate Rock Camp Trail is a short, easy walk to huge rocks covered in metates, bedrock mortars where the Serranos would come in the spring to grind the abundant acorns.

Some were over a foot deep, indicating years and years of repeated use.  There were some California Black Oaks around to produce the acorns, but not many.  The climate must have been much wetter hundreds of years ago, and over the ensuing centuries, the oaks slowly faded away as more drought resistant trees took their places.

The metates were guarded over by a small stone monument that was erected in the 1930s.  I was amazed at the lack of graffiti or trash.  The whole area was so well preserved that it looked like the First Nation people had just been there a few months ago.

Max’s interpretation of how the acorn grinding worked: the menfolk slaving away, and the lady supervisor encouraging them to keep up the hard work!

The trail wound around the edge of a meadow, filled with oaks, pines, and mazanita bushes.  Nothing looked very healthy, and it was incredibly dry.  We walked though a creek bed that looked like it was once filled with deep and fast moving water.  I can see why it was a popular place to be in the spring–it was like a supermarket with everything you could need!

I finally found a Ponderosa pine tree.  They look almost identical to the Jeffreys that are common near us, with two major differences:  Ponderosas smell like turpentine, while Jeffreys smell like vanilla, and “Gentle Jeffrey, Prickly Ponderosa.”  If you run your hand down the outside of a Jeffrey pinecone, the barbs are pointed inward and don’t hurt your hand…the sharp barbs of the Ponderosa point out and up.

Not sure if this is from a Jeffrey or a Ponderosa–it was dried enough that the individual scales were starting to separate from the core, and we couldn’t tell how they were originally oriented. Regardless, it was the size of my head and weighed a couple pounds!

You get an instant demerit if you can’t guess what was next on the agenda…..yes, ice cream!  We stopped by Glen Haven Malt Shop in Lake Arrowhead, where JJ and I had been once before.  Great ice cream dinner!

On the car ride back home, I realized that I must have left my phone awake, and at one point during the day, it took about 50 pictures of the inside of my pocket.  The whole series was fairly artistic, I guess:

The best part of a day off is going to bed early.  Ideally, we would be in bed around 9:30 every night, but quiet time doesn’t start until 10pm at the campground, and we need to be awake to sell wood until then.  We’re in good company with the other RVers around here; the joke is that 9pm is “Rver midnight”, because so many of us are asleep by that time!

We also had a great time this past week when our friend Melissa visited.  She’s the friend we recently went down to see in Pasadena.  She and her adorable Labradoodle, Henley, came up on Saturday.  They arrived in the afternoon and ambitiously set off to conquer the Cougar Crest Trail.  After about 6 miles of hiking and one rattlesnake siting, they arrived back at the campsite tired and happy.

The best part of Melissa’s visit was that she brought food for us.  She made corn hoe bread and chili over the fire for dinner on Saturday, and then bacon and eggs on Sunday morning!  We were in such a good mood on Sunday after her visit… it was so nice to spend time with someone we enjoy, and to be cooked for was just fantastic!

Today, we went to the farm market, and then browsed the thrift shops in the area.  The pickings are pretty slim, but I found a t-shirt ($1) and JJ got 2 books (.35 c).  We explored an area that we often tell campers about–the swimming beach on the south side of the lake.  In addition to the beach, there are also tennis courts, baseballs diamonds, and lots of green lawns for picnicking and playing.  There’s also a short pier that faces west over the lake.  I commented that it would be the perfect area to watch a sunset.  Well, that sounds like a plan!  We always hate to be cooped up inside our rig when the weather is so pleasant in the early evening, but we’re fair game to campers when we sit outside.  We will take our chairs back over to the pier and watch the sun go down over the lake.

Yep, same shirt as yesterday–why get something else dirty?! See the white Solar Observatory behind me? The campground is right behind it.

Believe it or not, there’s only a few weeks remaining until Labor Day, when the reservations at the campground will drop off dramatically.  I’m doing my best to remember that no matter what happens with our work, it’s only a temporary gig.  I must admit, I bring perfectionist tendencies to everything I do, even cleaning toilets.  It’s a fine thing to have pride in your work, but it does your health no good to obsess over things you can’t change.  And you know, no matter where you go…there you are.  Library or Campground, you can find things to fuss over.  Or, you can say to hell with it now and then, and go watch a sunset with your babe.

 

 

 

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One thought on “To Arrowbear and beyond!

  1. It’s so much fun to read your blog. Got your card today- it made me smile. You both look really good – hope the sunset was/is amazing!!

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